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I hope that you and your family are enjoying a wonderful day of giving thanks to God for all of his wonderful blessings and the millions of ways that He takes care of you and your family all year long.
Also here is a fun turkey Nanogram to add to the fun of this wonderful day of thanks.
Faith, it is a very small word containing only five humble letters, yet it certainly is a mighty word. When everything is going right, and the road of life is quiet and well paved, it is really easy to say I have faith and think that you understand what that word really means. But how can you? What faith is required when life is at its best and want and fear have no place in your life.
What faith is required to walk on plush carpets and eat ice cream by the pool? What faith do you have to rely on when your life is like a romantic postcard or an add for a tropical resort? What exercise of heart and mind is called for when your life could be flashed up for the poster image of successful because your every want and need is met for years to come. When your beliefs line up with the crowd and are excepted at every turn as the only way to live, saying I have a measure of faith takes neither courage nor self-denial.
It is not until trial and adversity hunt your steps, when discouragement and disappointment hunt you down like a pack of hungry hound dogs that you really get a glimpse of the depths and power of faith. Because it is then that you have to chose to hold on to faith. It is then that you have to chose to grab hold and cling to faith, that it become more than words.
From our comfortable arm chairs it is easy to look back at the mighty men of faith and say, I would do the same. Or to look down at those who fell short of the mark and say, I would never do that. Nothing would make me lose my faith. I would never chose the comforts of this life over faith in Jesus. If I were in that garden, or if I had been King Saul, or if I had been so and so I would have done this and not done that.
I trust and wait, is an easy thing to say when everything is going right. But during times like these, when the tiny two steps forward that it has taken years of struggle to gain, in one second has been swallowed up, and it seems like you are about to be pushed back a thousand feet farther than ever before, its not so easy to say. And harder yet to mean.
I trust and wait, praying and working, even though that is all you can do in this life, sometimes does not seem like enough. And it seems like vanity, when you look at the wall of problems eagerly seeking a way to knock you down.
O how simple those words of faith are in times of ease, but in uncertain days like this, when your fledgling business that a few months before was just starting to grow, has suddenly turned upside down. And a thousand clicks is lucky to bring in one or two sales. And all your painful sweat, your agonizing hours of pushing through exhaustion and pain, have evaporated into another lost dream, suddenly its not so easy to promise to put everything in God’s hands, and to give over your heavy burdens.
In times like these it is so tempting to rip them from His hands, and say Lord, I know better than you. To say why did I let go, when everything I have tried goes wrong. And every corner of my life seems to be filled with nothing but impossible dreams.
Yet this is the moment, this is the hour that our faith must rise to the challenge, and take an even stronger hold of that Almighty hand. Now more than ever, it is time to give God every corner of our heart, and to tell His listening ear of our increasing woe. For we are small and powerless, but who can stand before the Maker of the Universe? Who can cross the line, of Him who by a word quieted the storm?
They say that after a long trip, the last few miles home are the hardest. And from the looks of things, that is where we are in the scheme of prophetic history. The bulk of our wandering in an arid desert is almost over. In a few more miles we shall reach the banks of the Jordan and there we shall at last lay down all of our burdens. But like the wandering children of Israel before us, the last few miles will not come easy. Temptation and trials will increase, as the devil uses every device to trick, discourage, and if possible prevent us from making it to the other shore.
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Today I am in one of those rare moods where I want to imagine what it would be like if through some positive change in circumstances, I was finally able to have my own bathroom. For years I have hoped and prayed that some day I would at least have a chance to have my own bathroom space that I could decorate. I would love to have a theme for each season to keep things from getting boring. But if not, my top pick would be the beach.
I love going to the beach. and listening to the soothing sound of the waves and feeling that refreshing breeze against my face. I used to look forward to those 2-3 days a year that we got to stay at the beach. In honor of those precious memories, if I ever had my own bathroom, at least part of the year I would decorate it with a beach theme. For starters I would pick out a piece or two of beach-themed wall art to help create a relaxing beach mood.
Come Soon and Rescue Us From Sin, is a poem that I wrote years ago. It would seem with the passing of the years that this longing would lose its power, but as I look upon the unsettled state of the world, as I behold the increasing tension between nations and people groups, as I watch in horror the open acts of lawlessness, and witness first hand how man’s hearts are growing cold to the rights and needs of their fellow man, it only grows stronger.
More than ever my heart cries out to God, come soon. Do not wait any longer. The earth indeed is reeling to and fro, and the people of the world are clasping their side and groaning like a woman in travail.
Yet at the same time, when I consider how far from the mark my life is, when I ponder the sad state of the loss, and when I think of how many precious souls have no real understanding of the battle between good and evil, I long for a little more time to pray and seek the lost.
Truly we live in strange times where the effects of sin are becoming so clear that our hearts desperately call out come now dear Lord and put an end to the cruel work of sin, yet there are still many hearts that are open to the calling of God, and as much as we long for the day of redemption, love for our fellow man bids us to wait a little longer.
But as hard as it is to wait, the signs around us are shouting that are wait is nearly at an end. And that today is the day to begin in earnest to prepare our hearts to meet our Savior and to work with all our might for the salvation of friends, family, neighbors, and foes.
Is it just me, or should the saying it never rains, but is pours should be changed to it never rains but it hurricanes. Because that is the way that it feels like right now. First it was a string of severe health set backs, and before I could catch my breath, it was six painful losses, one right after another.
Now, when it seemed like I might have time to catch my breath and finally begin to grieve, the bad news hits that it looks like my little puppy is following my Father’s footsteps. His sugar is high and his liver and kidneys are not doing so good. They are beginning to fail him. He has lost 8 or 9 pounds and that is a lot for a 28 pound little dog.
We have gotten the medicine and started treatment. Right now there may be hope, at least we hope that there is some hope. But it is too early to tell. For the next few weeks it will be a waiting game to see how Happy responds to the treatment.
During times like these it is so easy to get discouraged. To feel like all hope is lost and that joy is forever dead. Knocked down and tested to the point of breaking it seems like tears and sorrow are your undesired lot. In moments like these, where the pains and sorrows of life press down upon the heart seeking take away one’s breath, it is easy to forget that the pains of this life are for a moment. To forget that there is hope, because one day soon, sin will become a distant memory.
In the hour of darkness it may seem like sin is wining. That it is quickly going about swallowing up hope and happiness. But the good news is that the hour is quickly approaching when the tables will turn. Sin and its cruel companions, want, hunger, pain, sickness, and death, will be swallowed up. Truth, justice, hope, mercy, grace, and life everlasting will win the day.
Right now the enemy of soul’s is angry. He sees that his time is short, and like a roaring lion he is going about trying to turn the eyes of all from their only hope. He is trying to crush the hearts of men and keep them from looking up and through the eye of faith beholding the approaching promise of the great day of salvation.
He sees that final battle is getting ready to begin. He knows that it will not be long before the last decisions will be made, before the last heart will take their stand for or against God. And then the final crisis will begin, and just when it seems like he has gotten the victory, Jesus will appear and fill the heaven’s with His great glory.
Oh right now it is so easy to lose sight of that wonderful day. The pain and fears of this life seem like they are going to swallow us up, and there is no reason to smile anymore. But it is at this very moment that we need to look up. We need to look up with the eye of faith and behold the promised day of salvation. Because when we do our burdens will be lifted and our pain eased. Yes, the tears will flow and the heart will ache, but even in this fearful hour peace can and will fill our hearts as we set our sights not upon the darkness of the tomb, not upon the fearful uncertain of sickness and want, but upon the glorious day when this world will pass away and Heaven with its wondrous, unspoiled, and unfading glorious will be our home.
I have shared this poem before, but somehow, as I see the strange twist and turns that this world it taking, and as I remember the loved ones who are now sleeping in their grave waiting for the Lord to return, my heart aches with a deeper desire than ever for that glorious day of victory. And my yearning heart cries out more than ever, Lord come soon and rescue us from sin!
Today there is a deep heaviness upon my heart. I have spent a large portion of the day remember those I love who have been taken from me by the cold hand of death. As I think of those wonderful days so full of joy, my aching heart fills with a longing for that wonderful day when death will be a distant memory. And every fiber of my body screams, come dear Lord. Come soon and rescue us from the misery of death and sin!